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The Kempt Guide to Extremely Hot Weather

Summervia Flickr

It’s official: July fourth is past, and we’re now into the “soul-crushingly hot” portion of the summer.

But don’t despair—or worse, turn to t-shirts and shorts. We’ve got five bits of wisdom to see you through the dog days in style. They involve madras, handkerchiefs and rum…

#1: The Fabric Unless it’s feather-light, plain cotton is your enemy. (That polo shirt is often a lot thicker than you think.) Stick to linen blends like this and this wherever possible, along with the usual chambray, seersucker and madras.

#2: The Hat Preferably one of the woven straw persuasion. If it’s the weekend and you’re within two miles of a stadium, we might even allow a baseball cap—as long as it keeps you in the shade.

#3: The Roll First, your pant cuffs get at least two rolls. What was a charming affectation in May becomes a downright necessity in July. After that, your sleeves—down to the elbow, as soon as you taste the first moments of your lunch break. Pull it off right and you’ll look hard-working instead of just sweltered.

#4: The Drink Make it cold, tall, and in a glass. Our favorites include sangria, tequila and ginger ale, a rum-spiked Arnold Palmer, and a gin and tonic with a sprig of mint—but follow your heart.

#5: The Handkerchief If you do find yourself perspiring, and feel the urge to mop the sweat from your brow in as stoic a way as possible, you’re going to want a white cotton handkerchief on hand. (Take note: that’s noticeably different from your silk or linen pocket squares.) These should do the trick. They also work for comforting distraught women.